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Coronavirus Update: University Travel Reimbursement
Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:
Over the last several days, I have received many questions about University travel reimbursement. As such, I want to provide some direction regarding the reimbursement of travel expenses that faculty, staff and students incur for University business.
What can I do about travel-related expenses incurred for a conference or other event that has been canceled?
You should request refunds for all expenses paid. Contact conference/event organizers for registration and deposit refunds. Contact hotels for deposit refunds. Contact the airline for airfare credit or refund.
I could not get a refund. Can I be reimbursed for conference and travel expenses for canceled events?
The University’s expense reimbursement policy covers reimbursement of trips and events that are canceled as long as appropriate receipts are submitted. Reasonable efforts should be made to request refunds prior to submitting expense reimbursement requests, particularly when the conference/event has already been canceled or likely will be canceled. Check with your department to determine if your reimbursement is subject to more strict guidelines. Specific guidance relating to charging sponsored awards is available from Sponsored Programs and Sponsored Accounting. Given the importance of tracking these costs, MyCode 609722 should be used in the chartstring when completing the appropriate reimbursement forms.
What should I do if the conference or other event has not yet been canceled?
If you/your department decide you will not attend the conference/event, then you should request refunds for any expenses already paid.
What are the fees associated with canceling a flight?
Typically, there are no fees for cancelling a flight. The fees are incurred when rebooking the flight. Many tickets are non-refundable. However, the flight can be canceled and usually the ticket is available for use one year from the date of issue. In addition, there are airline-imposed change fees for rebooking non-refundable, canceled tickets. Some airlines have been offering special accommodations for coronavirus-related cancellations, and travelers should specifically inquire. All rules associated with cancellation and fees can vary by airline and ticket class. Details should be confirmed with the particular airline.
When should I cancel my flight?
You can cancel up until the day of travel as long as you have not checked in. We recommend checking the airlines’ websites for cancellation policies as they do vary.
What should be done with a refund for canceled travel plans?
If the expense was paid for by the University or reimbursed to you by the University, then the funds should be deposited back to where the expense was charged. If the money was deposited into your account or is in the form of a check with your name, you will need to write a check payable to the University and give it to your department for deposit to the University.
What if I had personal travel plans that were canceled or disrupted due to this situation?
The University cannot reimburse you for expenses associated with personal trip cancellations or disruptions. Out of an abundance of caution, to protect your health and minimize further health risks, we ask that everyone exercise prudent judgment when making travel plans and stay abreast of current travel guidance provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the University before departure so that you can prepare and take proper precautions.
I have additional questions. Whom can I contact?
For business travel expense reimbursement questions, contact Disbursements Processing at 315.443.2484 or email@example.com.
As a reminder, all of this information, as well as the latest coronavirus-related updates, can be found at Syracuse.edu/coronavirus.